Sunday, January 8, 2012

Schnitzelesque Pork Parmesan

An hour-long drive home and a three year-old who has mastered the phrase "I need you" and the puppy-dog eyes do not an early evening make, but I can pound this out pretty quickly after a cocktail and a round or three of Hungry Hungry Hippos.  

Assemble this stuff:

4 boneless pork loin chops, 3/4-inch thick
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Pinch of salt
1 egg, slightly beaten
½ teaspoon ground oregano
½ teaspoon dried basil
Dash of Tabasco
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup panko (or other bread crumbs)
¼ cup vegetable oil
parmesan cheese- REAL parm, not that crap in the can
marinara sauce
spaghetti, vermicelli or linguine

Set a heavy fry or saute pan over medium heat.  Add a couple tablespoons of vegetable or olive oil.

Get the water for your pasta going.  Please, please make sure the pot is big enough so that all your little noodles have their elbow room. Salt the water generously- it should taste like the sea.  And please, PLEASE make sure the water is BOILING before you put the pasta in- boiling as in big bubbles breaking the surface over and over again all fast-like. Stir the noodles till the water returns to the boil, then let it do its thing with the occasional stir till the pasta is to your liking. 

Set up your breading station. 
Season the flour with salt, add Tabasco, basil and oregano to the two beaten eggs and leave your breadcrumbs virginal.

Trim the excess fat and any tough tendony bits from your chops.
Save the bits for your sister's chickens.

Dredge each chop in the seasoned flour, shake off the excess, then dip into the egg mixture, let the excess drip off and then coat the chops with the panko.
My chef in cooking school said something about using one hand for the dry chops and one for the wet chops, but I could never figure out how to keep one hand dry...
                                         Pretty pretty pork chops.

Pop 'em in the pan.
                                         Watch for flying, spattering, boiling flecks of hell fat. 

Give 'em three or four minutes on each side. I usually put my chops on a rack over a baking sheet and put them into the warm oven while I drain the pasta and sauce it and stuff. 

Slice up one chop and tell your daughter it's chicken nuggets. 
                                         She'll love it.

Put something green on a plate, add chops and pasta.  Please sauce your pasta, don't put it naked on the plate.

Grate that parm over it all and enjoy! 

If you've done it right, you'll have chops that are crispy-crunchy on the outside and tender in the middle.   If not, you'll have slightly charred chops that are a little chewy on the inside. It happens to us all.


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